Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) Secretary Information Marriyum Aurangzeb censured the government for banning media from covering the joint session of parliament, saying Prime Minister Imran Khan would go down in history as a “dictator” owing to his “desperate media gagging” efforts through Pakistan Media Development Authority (PMDA).
In a statement, the PML-N leader reiterated that the party’s president, Shehbaz Sharif, had pledged to block the bill by standing shoulder to shoulder with the journalist fraternity. She described the PMDA as a “draconian law” introduced by the “fascist government”.
Earlier, protesting against the government’s plan to bulldoze the legislation through the joint sitting of parliament, Marriyum, along with former prime minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi and other opposition lawmakers, joined the journalist fraternity outside the Parliament House.
Meanwhile, the PML-N president and other opposition parliamentarians vehemently protested against the law inside the parliament. They held placards inscribed with slogans against what they dubbed “autocratic law”.
Shehbaz said that no stakeholders were consulted over the “black law,” asserting his resolve to challenge it. “I will not allow it to be imposed on the country through bullying,” he added.
Speaking at the journalists protest, Marriyum laced into the PTI-led government and echoed Shehbaz. “This imposed government won’t be allowed to impose this law at any cost. Such black actions by this government are going to further smudge the already disfigured and tainted face of the fascist Imran government,” she said.
“Such repressive actions won’t change the fate of the nation that had been doomed after being handed over to the corrupt and incompetent looters of PTI,” she said, adding that it would not lower the prices of sugar, flour, electricity, gas, medicines, or everyday essential commodities. She said that if this “tyrannical government” believed that it would manage to win public approval by “gagging, censoring and silencing” the media, it is gravely mistaken.
The former information minister also went on to slam the government for limiting the presence of media personnel in the cafeteria. She said PM Imran’s actions had revived the legacy of former dictator Pervez Musharraf. “By barring the journalists from performing their lawful professional responsibilities, Imran had become the Musharraf of 2021,” she said.
“In addition to other shameful accolades, Imran Khan had now earned the title of the first person to ban the entry of journalists in the joint session. Those who were tasked with regular coverage of parliament session were also banned,” she added.
Marriyum said the premier would be remembered as the “epitome of fascism and dictatorial rule”.